New Student Orientation

New Student Orientation

UH Hilo's New Student Orientation - group photograph of incoming class

Aloha and welcome new student to the New Student Orientation program! New Student Orientation is filled with fun activities, events, and workshops all designed to create connections with other new students, with our amazing UH Hilo faculty, and with numerous campus resources and the awesome staff that run them. We invite you to immerse yourself in the vibrant spirit of our university's culture and traditions during New Student Orientation. By participating in our program, you'll cultivate a strong sense of belonging and place, forging lasting bonds with fellows students, faculty, and staff that will accompany you throughout your journey at our university.

Fall 2024 New Student Orientation

New Student Orientation is open to freshmen and transfer students of all class standings. There’s a little bit of everything for everyone. The Vulcan Orientation program is on Wednesday, August 21st through Saturday, August 24th and spans into the first week of instruction.

This year, New Student Orientation is Free. However since there is a max capacity for parts of our programs, space is limited and on a first-come-first-served basis. We look forward to meeting all of you! Registration for Fall 2024 Orientation opened on April 30th, 2024 and closes on August 15th, 2024.

Pre-Orientation emails begin on Monday June 24th weekly for six weeks. You must be registered for in-person orientation to receive these emails.

The orientation schedule will be emailed out to students registered for orientation to sign up in advance for the different activities as space is limited to first come, first serve. This will be emailed out in early-August.

Fall 2024 Vulcan Orientation Schedule: August 21st-24th

Wednesday, August 21st: Develop a Sense of Belonging

  • 8:00am Check-In at the Campus Center Plaza
    • Campus ID & Packets, Resource Information
    • Meet your Orientation Leader/Group
  • 10:15am Class Photo
  • 10:30am Introduction to Kīpaepae
  • 11:00pm Kipaepae & Convocation
  • 12:30pm Lunch and College Presentations
  • 2:30pm End of Day
  • 3:00pm Planting STEM with ROOTS essential college skills workshops (Open to All Majors) Session 1 of 3

Thursday, August 22nd: Develop a Sense of Place

  • 8:00am Check-In at the Campus Center Plaza
    • Light Breakfast To Go
    • Meet your Orientation Leader/Group
  • 8:30am Wahi Pana/Bus Tour
  • 11:45am Lunch
  • 12:30pm Enrichment Workshops
  • 3:00pm Planting STEM with ROOTS essential college skills development (Open to All Majors) Session 2 of 3

A view of Hilo bay from Coconut island

Friday, August 23rd: Campus Tours

  • 8:30am Check-In at the Campus Center Plaza
    • Meet your Orientation Leader/Group
  • 9:00am ʻImiloa Astronomy Center/Student Life Center/Library/Campus Tours
  • 11:15am Lunch
  • 12:00pmʻImiloa Astronomy Center/Student Life Center/Library/Campus Tours
  • 3:00pm Planting STEM with ROOTS essential college skills development (Open to All Majors) Session 3 of 3

Saturday, August 24th: Campus to Community

  • 8:30am Check-In at the Campus Center Plaza
  • 9:00am Student Shuttle: Downtown Hilo/Farmerʻs Market, KTA Puainako, Target
  • 1:00pm Last Return to Campus
  • 2:00pm-5:00pm Pool Party Student Life Center


Hele mai (come) over to the Student Life Center to kick off the semester with a splash! Make new friends, play a variety of games, and create unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. Free meaʻai (food) while supplies last! Invite your orientation friends and let them know you're ready to dive into the semester. Don't miss out on the fun cause wai (water) not!

You may want to review Frequently Asked Questions asked by new students about Orientation.

Getting here…

When should I arrive?

If you are living on campus in the Residence Halls please take time to review the following important dates and rate information.

Travel Arrangements

As you are making your travel arrangements, be sure to check out our Travel Info page. You could be eligible for a discounted flight.

What others have said

We always like to assess the programs that we offer so that we can continue to improve the way in which we support the success of our students. Here are a couple of things our students told us last year about their Orientation experience:

97% said “Orientation helped me feel welcomed to UH Hilo
93% said “Through Orientation I learned about resources and offices on campus
99% said “Orientation helped me feel better prepared to start my first semester at UH Hilo
92% said “I would recommend this orientation program to other new students

One student said:

"I am a non-traditional transfer student and, even though I am not freshman age or a new student, I really got a lot out of attending orientation. I didn't feel singled out because of my age or where I'm from. In fact, I felt right at home because of the incredible diversity in age and ethnicity on campus. I'm glad I am attending UH Hilo and I would highly recommend attending it to my friends and family."

Another student said:

"It was very helpful in my transition into college, I recommend this program to new upcoming freshmen."